The African nation of Burundi issued this pair of items in 2013. They are part of a larger set that included Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Wagner, Schubert, and Verdi. For each composer there is a mini-sheet of a set of 4 stamps, plus a souvenir sheet that includes a single additional stamp. These composers had no direct relationship with the issuing nation. As such their relevance to Burundi is non-existent. Therefore, they fall into the category of "wallpaper," postal items issued simply to make money for the postal administration from collectors who feel compelled to gather items according to their philatelic interests. In my case it's the organ on the stamp from the mini-sheet of 4. The stamp is denominated 1190 francs. It shows Bach at the console of an un-named instrument, a reference to the common image found purportedly at the British Museum. The other stamps show the composer at various stages of life, in one case playing a stringed instrument. These are so new that my Scott catalog doesn't include them yet.
To learn some details about my collection, click the "collection" label in the list below. If you want to get a little more information about some of the terms I use in relation to some of the organs depicted on these stamps, click the label "terms" below. For each you'll get a short discussion in a separate blog post. If you have a question not answered there, leave a comment and I'll answer it.
Michael R. Barker is director of music and organist at Black Mountain Presbyterian Church in Black Mountain, NC. I got my undergraduate degree in psychology and religious studies from Guilford College, Greensboro, NC, and earned a Master of Divinity degree from Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington, DC. I did further graduate studies in music composition at Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA. I have been a clinician in several settings on various areas of church music. My anthem for children’s choir, Miriam’s Song, is published by Chorister’s Guild, and my set of organ works, Three Festive Pieces for Christmastide, is published by Warner Bros. Publications. I have also written music and teaching materials for Abingdon Press and Cokesbury, especially for the Church Music Workshop. I have a new set of Christmas carol settings for flute and organ which was released last fall by MorningStar Music. My wife is Elizabeth Barksdale Barker, a marketing and communications specialist in the non-profit realm, working at MANNA FoodBank in Asheville, and we are the parents of eleven-year-old Eli, and five-year-old Briggs and one-year-old Calvin.
This is the little organ at Black Mountain Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) where I am organist and music director. Installed in 1980 it is a 2/21 Reuter, Opus 1979. It is located in the chancel and speaks directly down the nave.
Reuter 1979 Specification
Great Principal 8' Gedackt 8' Octave 4' Koppelflote 4' Flachflote 2' Mixture III Trompette 8'
Swell Rohrflote 8' Gemshorn 8' Spitzflote 4' Naset 2 2/3 Principal 2' Terz 1 3/5 Cymbel II Hautbois 8'